I'm not sure why, but the phrase "but we're only as smart as the people in this room" has cropped up a lot this week. Enough for me to take stock. What do I mean by that and when do I say it?
A lot of the time we limit ourselves. We create work that we know how to do. We create work based on the people we know. We all too easily can find ourselves saying, "I've written this great script. Pete can play the main character. We'll shoot on our camera. And that recent After Effects plug in would suit it down to the ground". That's fine I suppose. But what it does mean is that it is hard to grow and develop. You can only work within the confines of the talent around you.
Instead it can be more challenging to find people who can make you and your core team smarter. For instance we're hoping to work with casting agent Jesse Malone ever more closely on Circumference. Myself and Adam are quite good at casting, we know some agents, we know some actors, we're competent. We're probably competent enough to give it a go. But the effort would only be as good as the 'people in the room'. We want to move beyond that. We want the results to be better than what we can deliver.
In short - find the best people you can. It is not always easy. But it is the way to make a film that is better than the best film you could ever make.
If you understand that last sentence then you're on your way!
Image taken from A Night at the Opera.